Learning About Other Minds (LOAM)

Participant information for the online study

Dear participant,

With this letter, we invite you to participate in the above-mentioned study. Please read the following information carefully. You can then decide whether you wish to participate or not. Allow yourself sufficient time and ask the study staff any questions that are important to you. The study is financed by public funds (from the German Research Foundation).

Purpose of the study

Our behavior is marked by a certain characteristic tendency in how we strategically behave in social situations. We have good reason to suspect that patterns of behavior in repetitive social interactions over time may shed light on important aspects of psychological well-being. For this reason, we want to use mathematical models and imaging techniques to investigate the occurrence of strategic reasoning in the brain.

Personal benefit of the study

The results of this study could help us to learn more about cognitive function and mental health. You will not benefit personally from participating in the study.

Duration and procedure of the study

This online study takes about 40-60 minutes. As part of the sub-experiments, you will be asked to complete questionnaires, absorb logic tests and play a two-player game against a (pre-programmed) computer player. Each section of the experiment will start automatically with all necessary explanations after pressing the study link.

Unintended effects/risks

The computer-based tasks and games may trigger positive and negative feelings in you. If you would like to talk about your feelings during an on-site examination, a member of staff from the Clinic for General Psychiatry will be available to you throughout the examination. For the online surveys, you can contact us by phone or email Korn (phone: 06221 56-4363, email: christoph.korn@med.uni-heidelberg.de). The survey can be terminated at any time at your request without giving reasons.

Data protection

The provisions of data protection law are compiled with. During the online survey, your decisions and individual demographic information will be collected and stored electronically. This data will be stored in pseudonymized form, evaluated and published on the Internet. Pseudonymization is the processing of personal data in such a way that the personal data can no longer be attributed to a specific data subject without adding additional information (“key”). This additional information is stored separately by Prolific.co and is subject to technical and organizational measures which ensure that the personal data cannot be assigned to an identified or identifiable natural person. Prolific.co has access to the pseudonymization code but has no access to the data. We only receive the pseudonymized data that you give us. This data may be passed on to universities/clinics/companies in pseudonymized form, possibly also to countries where data protection requirements are lower than in the European Union. However, third parties will not be given access to original documents. The study management will take all reasonable steps to ensure the protection of your data in accordance with the data protection standards of the European Union. The data is secured against unauthorized access. Decryption of the data is not possible from our side. If you withdraw from the study, we can delete your data if you wish so. As soon as it is possible according to the research or statistical purpose, the personal data will be anonymized. Anonymization is the alteration of personal data in such a way that individual details about personal and factual circumstances can no longer be attributed to a specific or identifiable natural person, or can only be attributed to a specific or identifiable natural person with a disproportionate amount of time, cost or labor. It is not possible to draw any conclusions about individuals. The data is published in anonymized form when the results are published, so that other researchers can use this data to check the results and to analyse further questions. Since this data is anonymized, no one, including yourself, can draw inferences from the data to your person.

You have the right to request information from the responsible person (see below) about the personal data stored about you. You can also request the correction of inaccurate data and the deletion of data or the restriction of its processing. The person responsible for the study-related collection of personal data is:

Herr Jun.-Prof. Dr. phil. Christoph W. Korn

Sektion für Soziale Neurowissenschaften

Klinik für Allgemeine Psychiatrie

Voßstraße 4, 69115 Heidelberg

Tel.: 06221-56 310810

E-Mail: christoph.korn@med.uni-heidelberg.de

If you have any concerns regarding data processing and compliance with data protection requirements, you can contact the following data protection officer of the institution:

Frau Dr. iur. Regina Mathes

Im Neuenheimer Feld 672, 69120 Heidelberg

Tel.: 06221 56-7036

E-Mail: datenschutz@med.uni-heidelberg.de

In the event of unlawful data processing, you have the right to lodge a complaint with the following supervisory authority:

Der Landesbeauftragte für den Datenschutz und die Informationsfreiheit Baden- Württemberg

Postfach 10 29 32, 70025 Stuttgart

Königstraße 10a, 70173 Stuttgart

Tel.: 0711/61 55 41 – 0

Fax: 0711/61 55 41 – 15

E-Mail: poststelle@lfdi.bwl.de

Internet: http://www.baden-wuerttemberg.datenschutz.de


The employees of Heidelberg University Hospital are insured against liability claims by study participants. You must immediately report any damage that you believe is attributable to the study to the study director.


Participation in the study is voluntary. If you wish to participate, we ask you to sign (via click) the enclosed declaration of consent. You can revoke this consent at any time without giving reasons and without incurring any disadvantages. If you wish to withdraw your consent, please contact the study management or the staff treating you. If you withdraw your consent, you can decide whether the data already collected from you should be deleted or may continue to be used for the purposes of the study. Even if you initially consent to further use, you can still change your mind at a later date and request the deletion of the data; to do this, please also contact the study management or the staff treating you.


You will receive a financial compensation for participating in this study.

If you have any further questions, you can always contact Prof. Dr. phil. Christoph Korn (Tel.: 06221 56-4363)

We would be grateful for your participation in this research project!

Prof. Dr. phil. C. Korn

Head of study